Northern Europe

northern region of the European continent

Northern Europe is the northern part of the European continent. Most people see the following states as part of it:

Europe, the planet's 6th largest continent, includes 47 countries and assorted dependencies, islands and territories.

Before the 19th century, the term 'Nordic' or 'Northern' was commonly used to mean Northern Europe in a sense that included the Nordic countries, European Russia, the Baltic countries (at that time Livonia and Courland) and Greenland.

In earlier eras, when Europe was dominated by the Mediterranean region (i.e. the Roman Empire), everything not near this sea was termed Northern Europe, including Germany, the Low Countries, and Austria. In medieval times, the term (Ultima) Thule was used to mean a semi-mythical place in the extreme northern reaches of the continent.

In a European Union context, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Austria, Luxembourg, Belgium, Netherlands, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania are often seen as belonging to a Northern group.

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